Women Driving Excellence: Recap #WDE15

Houseful of Nicholes was compensated to cover the events of Women Driving Excellence at the Chicago Auto Show. All thoughts and opinions are my own. 

Earlier this month, I talked about the excitement that is Women Driving Excellence coming to the Chicago Auto Show for the third year in a row. It did not disappoint. This year, the honoree list was very awesome, and VERY Chicago. I am not sure that any individual honoree was more inspiring than the others. I loved that they all came from every walk of life, every socio-economic background, and that they were groundbreaking in every way possible. Sometimes, being a woman is akin to walking a fine line, and keeping your head down. Let me assure you though that NONE of the ladies below got to where they are by being afraid to take risks and be noticed. They are trailblazers and proud of it. 

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There were journalists, lawyers, doctors, police commanders, ceo’s, and entrepreneurs. They each moved their ways to the top of their fields, and they inspired doing it. One of the best quotes that I heard was, “When you climb that ladder, don’t roll it up after you get to the top, leave it hanging so that others can join you.” It’s all about inspiring others as you grow, and become knowledgeable, and we received so much sage advice that I’m still processing. 

With sponsorship from Nissan, and the Chicago Tribune, the Women’s Day festivities at the Chicago Auto Show lasted a full day, and had everything from networking to song excerpts from First Date to a live taping of ChicagonistaLIVE and of course, a tour of the Nissan section of the auto show. The networking was the best part, and I must say that Janet Davies is a woman after my own heart, because she was SO open to meeting others around her, and sharing her story. Yes, I’m the one speaking in the photos, but I promise you, she got to talk! 

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One of the messages that rang clear, through and through, was that it takes a village. If that village is one that you bring with you from your time knowing them from summers past, or if it’s your spouse and their taking over your duties while you fly out to handle business in DC, the support is there. Support of parents, friends, or even strangers on the street who give you compliments on that one day you feel like giving up. When guys taking bets let you know that it looks like the “broad” is going to win, you know that you’re on the right track. Breaking records and being the first in line to do things is only a few of the amazing accomplishments all of these ladies have going for them, and they want us to follow suit. 

State Farm was also a partnering sponsor, and even made their way into an impromptu workout hosted by Andrea Metcalf who was the emcee of the program. 

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All in all, it was a GREAT show, with a fantastic turnout, and PLENTY of ladies left with new connections (I’ve already been in contact with a few who I met) that will hopefully turn into great things. Who knows, maybe we’ll see one of you honored next year! 

Thanks so much to Beth Rosen and MJ Tam for sponsoring this event, and for trusting us to cover as well. 

Photo Credit: Fabie DeSilva Photography
                          Jonathan Zuluaga Photography

 

 

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